By Lindsey Joe, YMCA Registered Dietitian Nutritionist
Ahh, fall. Not only are the leaves turning and mornings getting cooler, but there's also an invasion of all things pumpkin this time of year.
Pumpkin is an excellent source of vitamin A, which is important for your eyesight, fighting infections, and maintaining healthy skin and bones. But, you must beware of added sugars and high amounts of fats in foods and drinks featuring pumpkin this season.
Case in point, the infamous Pumpkin Spice Latte. One 16-ounce latte contains 380 calories, 14 grams of fat (8 of which are un-heart-healthy saturated fats) and a whopping 50 grams of sugar—that's more than 4 tablespoons of sugar!
Instead of maxing out on your daily dose of added sugar from one drink, try this simple, homemade version of your favorite pumpkin spice coffee drink. It's sure to satisfy your pumpkin craving!
- 1/2 cup non-fat milk
- 1 tablespoon pumpkin
- 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin spice
- 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon agave
- 1 cup strong brewed coffee (6T: 4c)
- Add the milk, pumpkin, pumpkin spice, vanilla extract and agave in a mason jar.
- Screw on the lid and shake vigorously until bubbles form.
- Remove the metal lid and microwave the mixture for 45 seconds.
- Pour the warmed milk mixture into your coffee and enjoy!
This easy homemade version contains no fat and significantly less sugar with just 16 grams per drink. Now you can enjoy fall without packing on the pounds!
About the Series
Healthy Helpings is an ongoing series of sound information and inspiration for a healthier lifestyle. Look here for fresh recipes, fitness tips and more bite-sized advice on maintaining a better balance in life—from your friends at the Y.
Hungry for more? Click here for information on our nutrition counseling services, and get to know Lindsey and our other Registered Dietitian Nutritionists.